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Thread: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

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    The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    I've never seen (underwater video) a catch-up stroke used in freestyle in any meet. I've seen more of a mirror stroke pattern than catch-up. I've been told that during the 800 meter free, Ian Thorpe used a modified catch up but when I look at frame by frame I don't see it. I'm confused when I look at the webstie below that tells me that the catch-up stroke is the way freestyle should be done. Tell me what you think. Coach T.

    http://windnseaswim.com/catchup2.html

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    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    No one truly uses a catch-up stroke when racing, but lots of elite swimmer use a front quadrant stroke. The videos I've seen of Hackett vs. Thorpe in the 800 free (2001 Worlds?) clearly show both swimmers doing a very front-quadrant type stroke.

    edit: here's a youtube link It's especially evident in the quick overhead shot.

    Larsen Jensen also has a stroke that is very close to a "catch-up." He's the first swimmer shown in this clip.

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    Very Active Member okoban's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    What a good video, what a good style. Thanks a lot Kirk. In front quadrant swimming, coaches focus on the reach part of the stroke. They do not care about the last phase of the stroke (push). But when I analyse the stroke of the best freestylers, they do both (reach and push) very well.

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    Very Active Member aztimm's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Interesting. We just did a drill this morning where we were supposed to concentrate on the reach with one arm (the other skulling), then pull out the same way we reach in (so the pull doesn't generate any forward motion). It was really tough, and requires a strong kick to get anywhere.

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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Why is the swimmer in front stopping his kick? I thought that was a no no.

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    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Not necessarily. Not everyone uses a six-beat kick. Contrast the kicks between these two swimmers: http://youtube.com/watch?v=oac5nUDns94

    The woman using the two-beat kick is Laure Manaudou and she's the world record holder in the 200 and 400 meter freestyles.

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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    So what is special about her two beat kick that is better than others who have a six beat kick?

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    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    I didn't say it was better, but it obviously works for her. The point is there is no one correct way to swim. Kicking techniques vary. Some people will even change their kick depending on the length of the race (e.g., they might use a six-beat for events 200 meters and under, but switch to a two-beat for longer swims).

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    Very Active Member ensignada's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    The Larsen Jensen clip is very interesting. I was wondering if he swims "flatter" because of this style? In the clip it kind of looks like he does.
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Quote Originally Posted by Mirabella View Post
    So what is special about her two beat kick that is better than others who have a six beat kick?
    I recently switched from a flutter kick to a 2 beat kick. I have noticed that I am actually faster with a 2 beat kick, even in sprints. 2 Beat kick conserves energy and I think my technique is better with a 2 beat kick because I am able to get better axis rotation.

    Looking at the clip with Laure, you will notice that her cadence is faster then the 6 beat kicker, but her reach and rotation is better then the 6 beat kicker.

    Now, having said that, I'm not suggesting that 6 beat kickers don't have excellent rotation and reach, I just know that for me, I do, and apparently so does Laure. Of course, that is where the similarities end. Put Laure in double slow-mo and that would be me!

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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    A 6-beat freestyle kick would absolutely destroy my freestyle stroke. I have always used a 2-beat kick because it allows me to swim with a better front quadrant swim stroke and rhythm. Most of my freestyle swimming is done from my upper body with great rotation. My kick just balances my body in the water.

    Backstroke is different; I need a 6-beat kick.
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    Very Active Member geochuck's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    This may or may not be an underwater video of the catch up stroke??? It sure looks close to a catch up stroke but we can throw around any name you wish. It could be labled wrong but who am I to say. http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DxdTWoJ4aEQ
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Quote Originally Posted by geochuck View Post
    This may or may not be an underwater video of the catch up stroke???
    I can't really tell. It's kind of going too fast for me to get a good look. Is there a way to step frame-by-frame through a YouTube clip?

    Skip Montanaro

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    Very Active Member geochuck's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    I am not sure but I think this is the breakdown of that video????
    http://www.limmatsharks.com/CrawlAnalysis/
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    Very Active Member smontanaro's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Cool! Thanks George...

    Skip Montanaro

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    Very Active Member quicksilver's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Quote Originally Posted by tomtopo View Post
    I've never seen (underwater video) a catch-up stroke used in freestyle in any meet. I've seen more of a mirror stroke pattern than catch-up. I've been told that during the 800 meter free, Ian Thorpe used a modified catch up but when I look at frame by frame I don't see it. I'm confused when I look at the webstie below that tells me that the catch-up stroke is the way freestyle should be done. Tell me what you think. Coach T.

    http://windnseaswim.com/catchup2.html

    In my humble opinion...no one swims a true catch up style.
    The intention is to keep the lead hand out in front...for as long as possible...while waiting for the stroking arm to get into the FQ zone.

    A misconception is that the catch up is taking place under water.
    In reality the "wet arm" begins pulling as soon as the "dry arm" has made it past the shoulder.

    It is not at all like the handing off of a baton...in which both arms are out front playing tag with each other. (Even though this is the way we do catch-up drills.)


    I tell all my kids that the lead arm is a body line extender.
    By keeping the lead arm momentarily extended up front...drag gets reduced...and they will take less strokes per lap. It works.

    Grant Hackett has exactly this type of rhythm to his freestyle...
    Watch his dry arm get into the range of his shoulder...and only then does his wet arm begin pulling back.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SZdx_WVnG_M

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    Very Active Member geochuck's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Quicksilver.

    You are right no one does the true catchup stroke in a race.

    True catchup is to touch the back of the hand with the palm of the other hand, this is a drill. This drill has been done for at least 50 years. I think we did it to stop us swimming like Johnny W.
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    Very Active Member quicksilver's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    That's right George.

    Thorpe is one of the few swimmers where both arms can be seen forward of his shoulder and underwater at the same time.
    Unlike most FQ swimmers who have one arm wet and one arm dry...Thorpe comes very close to having a near catch-up stroke ...but not quite.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TbpB...elated&search=


    This is a great clip of Front Quadrant swimming.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBxlp...elated&search=
    Last edited by quicksilver; June 9th, 2007 at 03:15 PM.

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    Very Active Member geochuck's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Thorpe is very close, it also depends which hand you watch, but he is swimming front quadrant with both arms for sure. I think we sometimes miss name front quadrant by calling it catch up crawl???
    Quote Originally Posted by quicksilver View Post
    That's right George.

    Thorpe is one of the few swimmers where both arms can be seen forward of his shoulder and underwater at the same time.
    Unlike most FQ swimmers who have one arm wet and one arm dry...Thorpe comes very close to having a near catch-up stroke ...but not quite.

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5TbpB...elated&search=


    This is a great clip of Front Quadrant swimming.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBxlp...elated&search=
    Keep it simple George Park
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    Very Active Member knelson's Avatar
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    Re: The catch-up freestyle "the real freestyle"?

    Quote Originally Posted by quicksilver View Post

    This is a great clip of Front Quadrant swimming.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SBxlp...elated&search=
    We should note that this clip is mislabeled. That's actually Larsen Jensen, not Grant Hackett.

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